RHamill

156 Diagnostic/ June LSAT?

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Hey so i'm just curious about the potential to improve my LSAT score. So I briefly read over the Manhattan LR Textbook and read over the Logic Games bible. I did not read anything on Reading Comprehension. I just took a diagnostic and scored a 156. As far as diagnostics go is this considered acceptable or should I re-think what I am doing? I did not time the test or anything. I am aiming for a 163 or higher on test day. I am writing the June 2017 LSAT. Is this improvement realistic from now until June? Any recommendations? I got 155 on reading comprehension, 153 on LR, and 164 on Logic Games. I am going to treat the test as a full time job for the next 9 weeks as I am getting quite anxious, any help would be appreciated. Thanks so much!

Edited by RHamill

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Taking a "cold" diagnostic means that you're taking a timed LSAT test for the very first time - without ever having touched any of the prep materials. The whole point is is to get a sense of where your base level skills stand, without any prior preparation. So, technically, your diagnostic wasn't "cold", per se. That said, briefly going over prep books isn't all that much of problem. What you really need to do is to take a timed test. Until then, nobody can give you any substantive advice without knowing what score you're capable of getting under timed conditions. 

Good luck!

Edited by kilnsgly
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Taking a "cold" diagnostic means that you're taking a timed LSAT test for the very first time - without ever having touched any of the prep materials. The whole point is is to get a sense of where your base level skills stand, without any prior preparation. So, technically, your diagnostic wasn't "cold", per se. That said, briefly going over prep books isn't all that much of problem. What you really need to do is to take a timed test. Until then, nobody can give you any substantive advice without knowing what score you're capable of under timed conditions. 

 

Good luck!

Ahhhhh I was going to go back and change that I have no clue why I put that there thanks for pointing that out haha. Will do.

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You need to take a timed LSAT to get a real score. One of the biggest challenges with the LSAT is answering the questions accurately within the time allotted. If you haven't done it already buy old LSAT practice books from LSAC. My advice to you is to write full timed LSATs, include an extra unmarked section just like the real LSAT. For your unmarked section, pick the section that you're weakest on. After you've written and scored your LSAT test, go through all of the questions and find out where you went wrong. Personally I found the Logic Games Bible and 7sage's video explanations to be excellent. I would write at least 3 full LSAT tests every week. This means you'll have written 27 practice LSATs by test day. Best of luck!

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You need to take a timed LSAT to get a real score. One of the biggest challenges with the LSAT is answering the questions accurately within the time allotted. If you haven't done it already buy old LSAT practice books from LSAC. My advice to you is to write full timed LSATs, include an extra unmarked section just like the real LSAT. For your unmarked section, pick the section that you're weakest on. After you've written and scored your LSAT test, go through all of the questions and find out where you went wrong. Personally I found the Logic Games Bible and 7sage's video explanations to be excellent. I would write at least 3 full LSAT tests every week. This means you'll have written 27 practice LSATs by test day. Best of luck!

is there a recommendation for the number of tests one should take a week? Is 3 the maximum? 

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is there a recommendation for the number of tests one should take a week? Is 3 the maximum? 

I wrote two a week for most of my study period (about a 5 weeks) then one every day for the week prior.

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I wrote two a week for most of my study period (about a 5 weeks) then one every day for the week prior.

Interesting. So you didn't burn out doing one everyday the week prior? 

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Interesting. So you didn't burn out doing one everyday the week prior? 

I took a day off and did absolutely nothing for the day before. But no, I didn't burn out

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Personally, I found it really difficult to try to take more than 1 full test under exam-like conditions per week (while also working full time), so I would usually do 1-3 sections a night for 4-5 days a week after work, and then a full test on the weekend under exam-like conditions (i.e. timed, in a classroom or at the library, with only one 15 minute break), with one day off per week. I think the recommended amount of time you should allow yourself to study is at least 3 months. If you'd like to greatly improve your score, the best thing you can do is figure out your weaknesses, and work on those. So, for example, if you have a hard time with finding the flaw in reasoning for logical reasoning questions, then you should do as many of those questions as possible, and make sure you read that section in the Logical Reasoning Bible. Also, don't forget to always review your wrong answers, and make sure that you understand it completely before you move on. I highly recommend checking out all the free (and paid) resources on the (unofficial) LSAT blog

 

Just a note: as another poster mentioned, if you didn't time yourself for your 156, you likely won't score a 156 during an actual timed test. The timing of the test makes it far more difficult, especially for the reading comprehension. There is also a 'mystery section' that doesn't count towards your score, but it will affect your stamina depending on its position in your test. Also, I'm a little confused by how you've laid out your scores (155 on RC, 153 on LR, and 164 on LG). To score yourself on the LSAT you have to add your raw scores from all the sections together, and then use the scale from that particular exam to figure out how you scored (unless there's another way of which I am not aware).

 

Most importantly: don't stress too much :) Stressing out on the day can really affect your score (that's why doing full tests under exam-like conditions is so helpful, in my experience). If you feel like you need a break, take a break! You can always postpone or re-take the test, and you shouldn't sacrifice your mental health for a stupid (albeit important) exam.

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Personally, I found it really difficult to try to take more than 1 full test under exam-like conditions per week (while also working full time), so I would usually do 1-3 sections a night for 4-5 days a week after work, and then a full test on the weekend under exam-like conditions (i.e. timed, in a classroom or at the library, with only one 15 minute break), with one day off per week. I think the recommended amount of time you should allow yourself to study is at least 3 months. If you'd like to greatly improve your score, the best thing you can do is figure out your weaknesses, and work on those. So, for example, if you have a hard time with finding the flaw in reasoning for logical reasoning questions, then you should do as many of those questions as possible, and make sure you read that section in the Logical Reasoning Bible. Also, don't forget to always review your wrong answers, and make sure that you understand it completely before you move on. I highly recommend checking out all the free (and paid) resources on the (unofficial) LSAT blog

 

Just a note: as another poster mentioned, if you didn't time yourself for your 156, you likely won't score a 156 during an actual timed test. The timing of the test makes it far more difficult, especially for the reading comprehension. There is also a 'mystery section' that doesn't count towards your score, but it will affect your stamina depending on its position in your test. Also, I'm a little confused by how you've laid out your scores (155 on RC, 153 on LR, and 164 on LG). To score yourself on the LSAT you have to add your raw scores from all the sections together, and then use the scale from that particular exam to figure out how you scored (unless there's another way of which I am not aware).

 

Most importantly: don't stress too much :) Stressing out on the day can really affect your score (that's why doing full tests under exam-like conditions is so helpful, in my experience). If you feel like you need a break, take a break! You can always postpone or re-take the test, and you shouldn't sacrifice your mental health for a stupid (albeit important) exam.

this was really quite helpful thanks. I will make sure to simulate exam like conditions.

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is there a recommendation for the number of tests one should take a week? Is 3 the maximum? 

 

I was doing far more than 3 a week. This was in fall of 2012 so I don't fully remember my schedule, but I'd say at least 5, maybe more in the month leading up to the October LSAT. I was in school at the time so how long i could spend studying depended on my class schedule more than anything.  Sometimes would do 2 in one day, although I didn't do the extra 5th section and I'd stop the timer as soon as I was done and then move on to the next section immediately. Definitely don't do any the day before the exam, as someone posted above. 

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I was doing far more than 3 a week. This was in fall of 2012 so I don't fully remember my schedule, but I'd say at least 5, maybe more in the month leading up to the October LSAT. I was in school at the time so how long i could spend studying depended on my class schedule more than anything.  Sometimes would do 2 in one day, although I didn't do the extra 5th section and I'd stop the timer as soon as I was done and then move on to the next section immediately. Definitely don't do any the day before the exam, as someone posted above. 

Awesome as I was thinking I wanted to try 4-5 per week.

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Diagnostics are stupid anyways. They are only the subject of discussion because people like the idea of being able to find out right away how well suited they are for the LSAT (or even, insanely, law school, or even more insanely, practice). But you can't do that with a multiple choice test. 

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Diagnostics are stupid anyways. They are only the subject of discussion because people like the idea of being able to find out right away how well suited they are for the LSAT (or even, insanely, law school, or even more insanely, practice). But you can't do that with a multiple choice test.

You're right, we'd be much much better at predicting how much an individual can improve their score over a set period of time having literally no information about them. How silly of us.

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You're right, we'd be much much better at predicting how much an individual can improve their score over a set period of time having literally no information about them. How silly of us.

Obviously not. But a diagnostic is so inaccurate that it serves virtually no purpose. There are very few circumstances where it would be wise to adapt your behaviour based on the information it yields. 

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Obviously not. But a diagnostic is so inaccurate that it serves virtually no purpose. There are very few circumstances where it would be wise to adapt your behaviour based on the information it yields.

Completely disagree. If someone is asking whether they should write 1/2 months out and their diagnostic is leagues below their target it would be wise to alter your behaviour. Same deal if you're debating writing next month or 4 months from now and your diagnostic is 1/2 points below your target.

 

Knowing the diagnostic score, target score, and target write date are incredibly important for giving any advice regarding the lsat.

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Hey so i'm just curious about the potential to improve my LSAT score. So I briefly read over the Manhattan LR Textbook and read over the Logic Games bible. I did not read anything on Reading Comprehension. I just took a diagnostic and scored a 156. As far as diagnostics go is this considered acceptable or should I re-think what I am doing? I did not time the test or anything. I am aiming for a 163 or higher on test day. I am writing the June 2017 LSAT. Is this improvement realistic from now until June? Any recommendations? I got 155 on reading comprehension, 153 on LR, and 164 on Logic Games. I am going to treat the test as a full time job for the next 9 weeks as I am getting quite anxious, any help would be appreciated. Thanks so much!

So I replicated timed conditions and actually scored a 158 on my first true run-through... I took a big hit on Reading Comprehension... Any tips on how to improve? Any opinions on the best textbooks out there to improve my RC score (I found Manhatten Prep LR and LG bible extremely helpful). Thanks so much everybody 

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Completely disagree. If someone is asking whether they should write 1/2 months out and their diagnostic is leagues below their target it would be wise to alter your behaviour. Same deal if you're debating writing next month or 4 months from now and your diagnostic is 1/2 points below your target.

Knowing the diagnostic score, target score, and target write date are incredibly important for giving any advice regarding the lsat.

Wouldn't your scenario fall within the 'very few circumstances' outlined by the poster?

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Wouldn't your scenario fall within the 'very few circumstances' outlined by the poster?

 

No. I think, broadly speaking, my advice would be different based on groups of approximately 1-2 points to target, 3-5 points to target, 6-10 points to target, 11-20 points to target, and 20+ points to target score (from diagnostic). I would provide different advice for all these groupings, and therefore believe people should alter their study behaviour based on these scores. 

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